China unveils 'world's fastest' high-speed train capable of travelling more ...

China unveils 'world's fastest' high-speed train capable of travelling more ...
China unveils 'world's fastest' high-speed train capable of travelling more ...

China has unveiled what it hopes to be the fastest train in the world with a top speed of more than 370 miles per hour. 

The new train, self-developed by China and manufactured in the coastal city of Qingdao, uses maglev technology which allows it to travel so quickly. 

Using electro-magnetic force, the maglev train 'levitates' above the tracks with no contact between body and rail.

The train, capable of travelling at 372 mph (600kph), would be able to travel from London to Paris in 34 minutes, compared to the Eurostar fleet's two hours and 16 minutes. 

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The new train, self-developed by China and manufactured in the coastal city of Qingdao, uses maglev technology which allows it to travel so quickly

The new train, self-developed by China and manufactured in the coastal city of Qingdao, uses maglev technology which allows it to travel so quickly

Using electro-magnetic force, the maglev train 'levitates' above the tracks with no contact between body and rail

Using electro-magnetic force, the maglev train 'levitates' above the tracks with no contact between body and rail

Today, the blue and black locomotive travelled out of the manufacturing building of the state-owned CRRC Qingdao Sifang, China's official train builder, in Qingdao

Today, the blue and black locomotive travelled out of the manufacturing building of the state-owned CRRC Qingdao Sifang, China's official train builder, in Qingdao

What are 'maglev' trains?

Maglev trains use magnets to lift the carriages above the track.

This eliminates the need for wheels and, therefore, any incidence of friction, providing faster and quieter service.

Acceleration and deceleration far exceed that of conventional trains.

And maglev also makes for much smoother journeys.

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Right now speeds are limited at up to 400 kilometres (250 miles) per hour due to the excessive air resistance encountered at these speeds.

But vacuum tube designs could allow them to travel over seven times faster in the future.

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Today, the blue and black locomotive travelled out of the manufacturing building of the state-owned CRRC Qingdao Sifang, China's official train builder, in Qingdao.   

'Welcome to the high-speed maglev train that runs at 600kph,' read a digital screen inside the train, according to video by Xinhua news agency. 

The train will be put into service in between five to 10 years, Liang Jianying, CRRC Qingdao Sifang's deputy general manager and chief engineer, told China Central Television. 

The locomotive can travel with two to 10 carriages, each holding more than 100 passengers, Ding Sansan, chief engineer of the project told Xinhua News agency.  

China has been using the technology for almost two decades on a very limited scale. Shanghai has a short maglev line running from one of its airports to town.

While there are no inter-city or inter-province maglev lines yet in China that could make good use of the higher speeds, some cities including Shanghai and Chengdu have started to conduct research.

At 372 mph, the train would only take 2.5 hours to travel from Beijing to Shanghai by train - a journey of more than 1,000 km (620 miles).

By comparison, the journey would take 3 hours by plane and 5.5 hours by high-speed rail. 

The train, capable of travelling at 372 mph (600kph), would be able to travel from London to Paris in 34 minutes, compared to the Eurostar fleet's two hours and 16 minutes

The train, capable of travelling at 372 mph (600kph), would be able to travel from London to Paris in 34 minutes, compared to the Eurostar fleet's two hours and 16 minutes

The train will be put into service in between five to 10 years, Liang Jianying, CRRC Qingdao Sifang's deputy general manager and chief engineer, told China Central Television

The train will be put into service in between five to 10 years, Liang Jianying, CRRC Qingdao Sifang's deputy general manager and chief engineer, told China Central Television

The unveiling comes after China revealed a prototype of a super-fast bullet train that engineers claim could reach 385 miles per hour. 

Dubbed as the 'super bullet maglev train', the model rolled off the production line and made its debut at a ceremony in the south-western city of Chengdu in January. 

Southwest Jiaotong University collaborated with two state-run companies, China Railway Group and CRRC Corporation, to develop the prototype in a 60million yuan (£6.8million) transport innovation programme, reported Xinhua News Agency

The homemade prototype is a 21-meter-long (69-foot-long) locomotive designed to travel at a top speed of 620 kilometres (385 miles) per hour. 

It uses high-temperature superconducting (HTS) maglev technology, different from the low-temperature technology employed by Germany and Japan

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